According to SealaskaHeritage.org, the academy “is designed to provide engaging culturally-based education and activities for youth in support of their future academic and personal success with a focus on rigor, relevance, and relationships.” Participants can make traditional drums, learn how to fillet salmon and prepare traditional foods, as well as learn Native languages.
The academy is for Sealaska shareholders or shareholder descendants entering sixth, seventh and eighth grades.
A former Latseen attendee—Alyssa London—applied to Stanford and wrote her application essay on her experience in the academy. She said she “came away feeling a strong spiritual connection to the Tlingit culture. I have a greater appreciation of what it means to be Tlingit. I realize I do not have to speak Tlingit, skin a seal, or have a full blood quantum in order to be Tlingit. My greater understanding of traditional Native values, my willingness to embrace them, and my excitement over my involvement in my culture, is what it means to me to be Tlingit.”
To apply, visit SealaskaHeritage.org or contact Sarah Dybdahl at 907-586-9234 or firstname.lastname@example.org.